5 reasons to add chickpeas to your diet

Cheap, delicious and versatile, chickpeas are an easy food to add to your diet to gain nutritional benefits. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 17 September 2020

5 reasons to add chickpeas to your diet

DUBAI: Learn all about the superfoods that will help you live a longer and healthier life. Devinder Bains, personal trainer and nutrition coach, fills you in…

Cheap, delicious and versatile, chickpeas (sometimes called garbanzo beans) are an easy food to add to your diet to gain nutritional benefits. From salads, homemade channa masala curry and making your own hummus, to using chickpea flour for your morning pancakes, they are packed with vitamins, minerals and are a great source of plant-based protein. Here are five more reasons to put them on your shopping list…

Keep anemia at bay

Chickpeas are a good source of iron, which is essential for the blood to transport oxygen around the body to its cells. Iron deficiency anemia can occur after prolonged periods without enough iron. Research suggests that iron stores can be lower in vegetarian women, especially those with a poor diet. This can lead to iron deficiency anemia, causing weakness, tiredness and in severe cases, life threatening organ damage.

Improved mental health




A cup of chickpeas plays a role in mood, learning and memory. (Shutterstock)

A cup of chickpeas contains around a sixth of your daily recommended amount of choline, an essential nutrient that impacts liver function, muscle movement, metabolism, healthy brain development and nervous system function. It plays a role in mood, learning and memory, with some research suggesting that it can help reduce the severity of both mania and depressed moods, especially in bipolar patients.

Benefits digestion

Chickpeas are rich in soluble fiber, which not only helps increase the amount of healthy bacteria in the gut, but keeps the unhealthy bacteria in check, too. This in turn reduces the risk of digestive conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome and colon cancer. It is important to note that in some cases chickpeas can help with bloating and gas, but some with irritable bowel syndrome may find it a trigger.

Helps fight diabetes




One study showed that eating at least 30 g of fiber every day could reduce inflammation in people with type 1 diabetes. (Shutterstock)

Fiber again is the key here, and because chickpeas are rich in it, The American Diabetes Association recommends them as a key food for those with diabetes. One study showed that eating at least 30 g of fiber every day could reduce inflammation in people with type 1 diabetes, while another study said that a high fiber diet may help lower blood glucose levels and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Reduce cancer risk

Antioxidants are essential for helping the body remove toxic substances called free radicals that build up in the body. They damage cells and cause various health issues, including cancer. The selenium and beta carotene in chickpeas act as antioxidants, with selenium’s antioxidant activity linked to protection from cancer. There is also evidence that fiber can help reduce the risk of bowel cancer.


French-Tunisian star Sonia Ben Ammar joins the cast of ‘Scream 5’

Updated 20 September 2020

French-Tunisian star Sonia Ben Ammar joins the cast of ‘Scream 5’

DUBAI:Up-and-coming French-Tunisian singer, model and actor Sonia Ben Ammar has joined the cast of “Scream 5,”  it’s been revealed this week.

 According to Variety, production on Spyglass Media and Paramount Pictures’ upcoming relaunch of the  famous horror film franchise is set to begin later this month.

Filmmaking duo Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, who are behind “Ready or Not,” are directing the forthcoming film.

The first “Scream” film was released in 1996, well before Ben Ammar was even born.  A smash hit upon its debut, the movie helped to revive the horror genre, becoming the highest-grossing slasher movie of all-time. 

This will be Paris-born Ammar’s first high-profile Hollywood gig as an actress. She along with other young franchise newcomers will be joining returning cast members David Arquette, Courteney Cox and Neve Campbell, who are all reprising their iconic roles as Dewey Riley, Gale Weathers and Sidney Prescott.

Plot details for the new film, set to debut in theaters on Jan. 14, 2022, are still under wraps,  so it is not yet known what role the French-Arab star will be taking on.

“I’m SCREAMing of excitement!! (sic)” wrote the 21-year-old on Instagram, announcing the news to her 730,000 social media followers. “Incredibly grateful to be part of one of my favorite franchises. 2nd photo is my face when I got the call lol (sic),” she captioned a screenshot of Variety’s article announcing the news and a blurry snap of her clearly overjoyed. 

However, it’s not the multi-hyphenate model’s first foray into the film industry.

Ben Ammar, who is the daughter of Tunisian film director Tarek Ben Ammar and actress Beata, previously starred in Guillaume Canet’s French-language film “Jappeloup” as well as the stage musical “1789: Les Amants de la Bastille.”

She’s also appeared in several music videos, including “Drivin’ Thru the Night” by DJ Petit Biscuit, as well as clips for her own singles, such as “Joyride” from her debut EP.

In addition to music, Ben Ammar is also a rising model, and has worked for many major brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Miu Miu, Carolina Herrera and Chanel, among other prestigious fashion houses.